Tuesday, January 31, 2006

What I'll be doing

I thought about live blogging the State of the Union tonight, but really, it's not like I'm getting paid to do this. As much as I love snark and contributing, that's just too much. Fuck King George and all his works.

Instead I'll turn on the DVD Player and watch "The Aristocrats" again. Sara Silverman's disturbing fake family story, and its conclusion about Joe Franklin are disturbing comedy at its highest art form -- and Bob Sagat is one sick bastard.

By the way, did someone mention the Aristocrats?

Oh, that's right I did -- from July 2005 (how did the Koufax Awards miss this one?):

"You have to hire us, we have this incredible ACT!!!"

First, the father manages to do some amazing things with with lips...

and then...

He and his wife get naked...

There is much scatological stuff but some other obscenities...

...and this guy gives it to us coming...and going...and twice in the ass...

"Sexual release"

And then, the next generation gets involved...

Somebody gets "loved, long time"

Somebody pretty much gets it on with a vegetable...

And somebody makes YOU get it on with a vegetable...

And then eats it...with your stuff all over it...

And the dog, don't forget what happens with the dog!

And then there are SISTERS!

And then there are other sexual acts that will blow your mind...



Cathch the Daily Show Re-run

If you didn't see last night's opening segment, catch it today. Stewart mocks the press making a big deal about the lies in the book A Million Little Pieces while it does puff pieces, if anything, on the regular pablum spewed by Bushco.

Attention Photoshoppers

Why not enter this contest and post a picture better than mine?

Photoshop a picture of Jack Abramoff presenting a huge ceremonial check to President Bush and email it as an attachment to thealfrankenshow@airamericaradio.com. We’ll display some of the entries here, and pick a winner. What fame can come from your glorious win? Just ask previous AlFrankenShow.com winner Katie Holmes how her life has changed.

I know you are anxious to see the Chimp again Tony, but jeez,

Have a little decorum.

(REUTERS/Michael Stephens/PA/WPA Pool)

In the time it takes me to make this short post...

Exxon would have made $89,000 in profit. ($1,000 a second)

However, thanks to Bush, Exxon and other oil giants were given gigantic tax breaks, $14.5 Billion worth.

Just before she swallows a rat

Well, I guess my morning post mocking Malkin will have to wait for another day, as TBogg did it first and better than I could have anyway.

Almost Ironic

That the Chimp is delivering his State of the Union Address on National Gorilla Suit Day.

Rest in Peace

Coretta Scott King. On the eve of Black History Month we see the death of a great American who carried on her husband's dream (and the highest dreams of humanity) with the utmost grace and dignity for 38 years after his assassination.

And what have you ever actually succeeded at Dumbass?

Oh that K-Lo, she knows comedy:


And then a picture supposedly of a forlorn Kerry?

Yes, John Kerry:

- Decorated Veteran
- Influential Civil Disobedient
- Four term Senator
- Democratic Nominee for President


- Has killed several boxes of twinkies & bags of cheetos
- Has failed to win the affections of the Doughy Pantload, or even John Podhoretz

Well, I guess she qualifies in a way as an expert at failure, having failed to make sense for several decades.

The word "FailTure" is not my doing by the way.

Beep, fucking Beep!

Christiane Amanpour blurts out the Truth on Larry King

Found over at KOS:

His suspenders must have curled up, Amanpour was visibly angry and determined to cut the bullshit last night -- always difficult to do when Larry's asking questions. I wish Costas had been there. After stating plainly what the Bush Administration doesn't want you to know, "The war in Iraq has basically turned out to be a disaster and journalists have paid for it, paid for the privilege of witnessing and reporting that and so have many, many other people who have been there", Amanpour plants it right between the corporate media and Bush's eyes:

As you know, there's not enough international reporting on American television anyway.

But I think to the bigger point, why are [reporters over there, in Iraq]? We're there because if we're not, whose word are we going to take for it? For instance, over the bombing in Pakistan, and for instance, over the constant atrocities in Iraq.

Are we going to take the Pentagon paid Lincoln Group who are paying positive stories to be written in the Iraqi press? Are we going to take what the administration tells us? Do you remember at the beginning of this war, Donald Rumsfeld, secretary of defense, told us that these insurgents were just a bunch of dead enders who amounted to absolutely nothing.

Well, that was three years ago. You remember on your own show, not so long ago, the vice president of the United States said that the insurgency was in its death throes, in its last throes.

Well, we're there to report what's actually going on and we pay a heavy price for trying to get to the truth. And the truth is what our business is all about. And that's why we're out there, despite the enormous, enormous personal cost to us, to our families, and to our networks.

I imagine the 101st Keyboarders will be demanding her phone calls be listened to...some more.

Nice "O" face

There Condi. Gwen Ifil would recognize it though.

Did I just say that?

Same look as Ken Mehlman...

Makes you think doesn't it?

Okay, back to the salt mines

Steve Gilliard makes a great point about how outside the beltway, the story was the disaster in Iraq (and I'd add Exxon profits) and not Sammy Alito.

With that in mind, let us impart on our backboned Democrat of the Day, Russ Feingold:

In a letter to the attorney general yesterday, Feingold demanded to know why Gonzales dismissed the senator's question about warrantless eavesdropping as a "hypothetical situation" during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in January 2005. At the hearing, Feingold asked Gonzales where the president's authority ends and whether Gonzales believed the president could, for example, act in contravention of existing criminal laws and spy on U.S. citizens without a warrant.

Gonzales said that it was impossible to answer such a hypothetical question but that it was "not the policy or the agenda of this president" to authorize actions that conflict with existing law. He added that he would hope to alert Congress if the president ever chose to authorize warrantless surveillance, according to a transcript of the hearing.

In fact, the president did secretly authorize the National Security Agency to begin warrantless monitoring of calls and e-mails between the United States and other nations soon after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The program, publicly revealed in media reports last month, was unknown to Feingold and his staff at the time Feingold questioned Gonzales, according to a staff member. Feingold's aides developed the 2005 questions based on privacy advocates' concerns about broad interpretations of executive power.

Gonzales was White House counsel at the time the program began and has since acknowledged his role in affirming the president's authority to launch the surveillance effort. Gonzales is scheduled to testify Monday before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the program's legal rationale.

"It now appears that the Attorney General was not being straight with the Judiciary Committee and he has some explaining to do," Feingold said in a statement yesterday.

You know, granted I'm not exactly an objective observer, but does anyone on earth think that after Scotty McClellan, Al "Uriah Creep" Gonzales is the least effective policy spokesman in years? The guy just oozes incompetence and insincerity. His departments explanation of its legal justification last week was simply sad - a first year law students hackneyed essay response.

The thought of Gonzales stammering out justifications for their policy has got to give Rove agita.

Again, maybe I'm too reality-based to get the secret of Gonzales's persuasive powers, but I just cannot imagine him being a persuasive spokesperson.

Well here's one

Here's Interior Secretary Gale Norton in a picture with Jack Abramoff. Norton has a lot to be worried about in the Abramoff affair given her department's responsibility over things like Native American Casinos.

(AP Photo/Department of the Interior, Taqmi A. Heilmann). [Credit Photo: Tami A. Heilemann]

Monday, January 30, 2006

I was wrong about Exxon

Yesterday I said they'd post an annual profit of $32 BILLION in 2005. Breaking the prior record by any corporation on earth by $7 Billion.

I was very wrong.

They made more than $36 Billion.

Meanwhile, they don't want to have to pay the $5 Billion in damages found against them for cleaning up after the Exxon Valdez.

Guess where Sammy Alito would fall on that question?

Too angry to snark...

Feel free to comment out your frustration.

American women, please have your uterus report to its new owner at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, D.C. by 9 a.m. eastern, Monday, February 6, 2006.


I don't mean to go all Michelle Malkin here by looking at ONE example and extrapolating to all Republicans -- still this is shall we say ... FUCKING DISTURBING! Look under "Message from your Host"

What could be classier than stringing up an effigy of a black man and beating him with sticks? [/sarcasm off]



The person who found this suspects it may be a hoax.


There's really no other word for this moronic statement:

They've been crying out in the wilderness for a few years now -- the folks who oppose the Bush foreign policy not because "Bush lied" or because they want "no blood for oil" or because the U.S. has no business doing anything. These are the realists, the supposed voices of reason who think American foreign policy needs to deal with the world as it is and to seek knowable stability as opposed to unknowable change. There's been a realist glaze over the attack on Bush policy in Iraq, but it's really just a glaze -- the real opposition is, of course, passionate and partisan. The Palestinian election last week offers the first real opportunity for the realists to say "I told you so"...
Posted at 11:11 AM

Every fucking day since about two weeks after March 17, 2003 has been an "I TOLD YOU SO" moment you idiot from the realist school, if not earlier December 2001 when they let Bin Laden escape. Hans Morgenthau has been spinning in his grave for a long time now.

Jesus, there's stupidity and there's the intentional assholishness of the stubborn ignoramous and the latter sums up JPod, K-Lo and Jonah every stinking day.

30 Rockefeller Plaza, about right now

The place, the office of the VP of NBC News. The executive sits as ABC news is on in the background.

A knock on his office door.

: "Come in"

(the door opens and we see the familiar face of TV Weatherman Al Roker)

Al: You wanted to see me?

VP: Yes Al, thanks for coming up so quickly. That was a great show today, what with the wishing all those centenarians a happy birthday and all. Nobody does those human interest stories with such style and verve as you.

Al: Thanks.

VP: (turning serious) Listen Al, I was watching ABC this morning off and on and everytime I looked their doing Bob Woodruff this, and brave reporter that.

Al: Yes sir, it's a tough situation for them, very sad.

VP: Huh? Yes, sad, whatever. You know what it means Al? It means for 2 hours today they had one ratings winner that was kickin' our colon.

Al: Well, I suppose that is one way of looking at it.

VP: One way? Al this is the network news business, there is no other way. Two or three kids buy the farm over there everyday, God knows how many are injured. We give some nice music for those who die, a story a year on amputees. Same dance for everybody. But my God, its been so long since we've had a reporter killed -- since that one guy...um...um...

Al: David Bloom.

VP: Yes, him. But you know what the problem was there? I'll tell you what, that was while the war was still worth paying attention to, in the exciting days of the march on Baghdad. Now you know what the war is?

Al: Um...

VP: BORING! Same song everyday, same everything. But a reporter risking his neck out of the Greenzone gives it a kick, some zazz! And man, ABC news is soooooo fucking lucky. Not only did this guy get injured, but he might live. He might live Al. Jesus, think of the ratings when he comes back into his anchor chair?!! Those lucky sons a'bitches Al.

Al: Well...

VP: So Al, do you want our ratings ass kicked by Dianne fucking Sawyer and Charlie shithead Gibson?

Al: Uh...

VP: Or their dipshit weather ass? He doesn't have near your Q ratings and shit, Al, guy has his entire stomach yet too! We cannot have that. Al, I can't ask Katie or Bryant to do this.

Al: Bryant?

VP: Sorry, Matt, I can't ask Matt to do this. Nor for that matter can we risk Brian Williams because he's like No. 1 already. So Al, I need you to take one for the team and do something for our ratings.

Al: What did you have in mind?

VP: I've looked through your contract and well, it appears this is allowed.

Al: What is it?

VP: You'll love it, you'll be a hero...

24 hours later...

Katie: And now, in a NBC exclusive we go to the skies over Mosul...

STAY TUNED: For our next Episode, CBS News Send Hannah Storm to the Mountains of Pakistan, and FoxNews sends Geraldo to the Moon.

Bush & Abramoff, and gee we have a shitty mass media

Buried in the news is this from the Associated Press:

The Bush administration's former chief procurement official tipped off lobbyist Jack Abramoff that the government was about to suspend the federal contracts of an Abramoff client, newly filed court papers say...

Acting on the information that Abramoff provided the company in November 2003, Tyco lawyer Timothy Flanigan, a former assistant attorney general in the Bush administration, contacted the general counsel to the GSA and asked for an opportunity to address the suspension.

The company revealed Flanigan's role in a statement.

In October, Flanigan withdrew his nomination to be Bush's deputy attorney general. His confirmation was delayed due to questions about his dealings with Abramoff when Abramoff was a Tyco lobbyist.

The government had planned to suspend Tyco because of alleged criminal conduct by former Tyco executives.

After advising Abramoff about the internal deliberations at GSA, Safavian suggested to Abramoff what arguments Tyco should make when it appealed the suspension decision, the court papers in Safavian's federal court case say.

Once tipped off by Abramoff, Tyco hired an outside law firm and successfully petitioned the government to lift the suspension and allow Tyco to continue to perform on government contracts.

And yet Bush won't release information regarding his contacts with Abramoff, or those of his White House staff.

One also wonders how those Abramoff prosecutors keep getting promoted off the case too.


Krugman states the facts on Abramoff today, just in case you feel the need to browbeat Deborah Howell, Katie Couric and Tim Russert some more.

Martin Garbus lays into the Bush/Abramoff prosecutor promotion as well.

Less Popular than Ever

From milquetoasty Kevin Drum comes this graphic, courtesy of Pew, showing the declining popularity of the Chimperor Disgustus's annual Dog & Pony show -- usually called the State of the Union Speech.

It's not going over very well:

After Tweety & Russert get done using their usual mantra of how Bush was "strong" & "determined" and shit, the fact is el Chimp will sink back into the morass of his unpopularity because nobody gives a shit about his song and dance routine anymore.

Bush needs to make this speech more memorable then he is normally capable of, something to stick in people's minds. He therefore must create a memorable image. As a progressive, let me suggest the following be considered by the White House. Have Cheney show up shirtless:

Thanks to the General for the image of nipply Dick.


It's going to be a tough year for John Podhoretz, self-described movie critic. Look at the academy award contenders, particularly under best actor:

- Heath Ledger; for a tremendous and largely silent performance in Brokeback Mountain. It cannot be easy playing a repressed, non-verbal character, but Ledger pulls it off amazingly well.

- Phillip Seymour Hoffman; in Capote for not playing Truman Capote as a cartoon character, which the real person himself became in the 1970s (back when JPOD was conducting the productive life of only watching television)

- Eric Bana; Playing a man employed to take revenge on those behind the Munich massacre, who finds himself becoming a monster.

- David Straithorn; Playing the icon of good journalism Edward Murrow, the man who helped take a Podhoretz family icon down.

- Viggo Mortenson; Who perhaps played the character a man like Podhoretz would fantasize about (in one way or another) in A History of Violence but who is a committed progressive who'd probably say many terrible (and true) things about Bush if he won.

Ultimately that leaves JPod with only one candidate he'll cheer for on Oscar night,

Joaquin Phoenix for Walk the Line. Playing a man who became famous singing songs about men in prison because they shot a man "just to watch him die"; became a drug addict, divorced his wife and mother of his children; reformed himself into the best kind of religious Christian by decrying the Vietnam War, pro-civil rights and sang about how the words of Jesus meant "love & charity" not kill abortion doctors or terrorists. Finally, the same man had a critical rebirth using his tremendous and distinctive voice to sing songs with lyrics like this:

Delia, oh, Delia Delia all my life
If I hadn't have shot poor
Delia I'd have had her for my wife
Delia's gone, one more round Delia's gone

I went up to Memphis
And I met Delia there Found her in her parlor
And I tied to her chair
Delia's gone, one more round Delia's gone

She was low down and trifling
And she was cold and mean
Kind of evil make me want to Grab my sub machine
Delia's gone, one more round Delia's gone

First time I shot her I shot her in the side
Hard to watch her suffer
But with the second shot she died
Delia's gone, one more round Delia's gone

But jailer, oh, jailer Jailer,
I can't sleep 'Cause all around my bedside
I hear the patter of Delia's feet
Delia's gone, one more round Delia's gone

So if you woman's devilish
You can let her run
Or you can bring her down and do her
Like Delia got done
Delia's gone, one more round Delia's gone

Of course, I suppose a lot of GOP Rapture lovers think that Delia must of deserved it because she was contemplating using RU-486 or something.

When you get right down to it, there's enough there to drive JPod to a thorough waxing.

The smelt it/dealt it defense having failed

Cheney is left alone to enjoy the results of evil mixed with dairy products.

(REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque)

The Standard

If you are a Quaker that makes "peace muffins" and protests outside of Halliburton you can get spied on by the Department of Defense.

If you are a lazy Bush Supporter you defend the NSA Domestic Spying Program by saying people who have done nothing wrong have nothing to worry about and should just allow such spying by calling it the Terrorist Surveillance Program.

If you are George Bush you get to hide your "public acts" from the country because those pictures and meeting with Jack Abramoff of your staff might be embarassing.

Now, I will support Bush's reluctance about releasing Abramoff photos and meetings if he was having private intercourse with him. If the President was having sexual relations with his buddy Jack then I will wholeheartedly defend him. All the President has to do is tell us that he and Jack had a love that dare not speak its name and I'll call for everyone to stop calling for those pictures.

So if that's the case, Mr. President I'm behind you...well, not in that way, but metaphorically.

Serial Threatener

The Gadflyer has the rundown of the many instances of Coulter applauding or proposing the death of various members of the media or the Democratic Party.

And then asks the pertinent question:

But the point is, the next time somebody on the left - and I'm not talking about some commenter on Kos, but someone equivalent to Coulter, who gets put on the cover of Time magazine, has a syndicated column, and gets on a cable chat show nearly every day - the next time somebody on the left with one tenth the prominence of Coulter starts advocating the murder of his or her political opponents, you can tell me how "angry" liberals are.

When will Mouth-Breather Media join in?

Now the Washington Post follows the NY Times with an editorial condemning Bush's domestic spying. Perhaps if they can ever get around to it, or just bring on a few non-Administration blowhards the Cable Networks will have to confront the fact that the President of the United States is a scofflaw (that's high falutin' talk for criminal):

After the abuses of the 1960s and '70s, Congress passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act precisely to ensure that there would be an independent monitor, in the form of a secret court, on the government's domestic surveillance. That is the law that President Bush bypassed in authorizing the NSA to monitor the communications of Americans. We believe that the president's decision violated the law and exceeded his powers as president. If it did not also lead to the wrongful targeting of some American citizens, then the NSA operation would be a historical anomaly.

It is much tamer than the NY Times editorial, though it does contain concrete abuses of a similar DOD plan found by amongst others Walter Pincus. It's not as strong as it could be, but now the Times and the Post are on record as being more condemning, by far, than any broadcast network.

Doing her part

To bring back the fun of the McCarthy-era, Laura is bound and determined to reinvigorate the popularity of the Eisenhower jacket.

And just because Watertiger's on vacation, don't think you can get away with that pinky nonsense Laura.

Looks like the men-folk are wearing Ol' Grandad faces on Sunday morning too.

(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Thumbs Up

For Walk The Line. What a great movie. I am finally over Brokeback Mountain.

Bush's Buddies

I hope this gets some news coverage going into the State of the Union:

OIL companies on both sides of the Atlantic will gush record profits this week, with America’s Exxon Mobil posting the world’s biggest-ever profit, and Shell setting a new record for British companies.

Exxon is tomorrow expected to unveil a profit of about $32 billion (£18 billion) for 2005, according to Thomson Financial. It will be the largest single profit in the history of corporate America.

It shatters last year’s previous record for a company of $25 billion, set by Texas-based Exxon, the world’s largest listed oil company, and easily trumps the benchmark $22.1 billion made by Ford in 1998.

On Thursday Shell will top record-setting results with an estimated profit of $23 billion for 2005. This is up nearly a third from 2004, when its profits were $17.6 billion, at the time the biggest by a British company.

EXXON, they're a tiger while we tank.

Meet the Republicans

Lil' Russ has stooped to a new low. A whole half the show devoted to licking Bill Frist's boots, then the omnipresent "roundtable". The roundtable: Roger Simon, Byron York, David Broder, and Kelly O'Donnell. You can imagine how even-handed the discussion was.

Bubble boy

The Preznit's gigantic proposal in the State of the Union Health Care Savings Accounts pretty much amounts to this:

Sometimes the key to good politics (and good policy) is simply to say out loud what your opponents are saying amongst themselves. And that's just the case with these new health care proposals the president is set to unveil in his state of the union.

I'll leave it to the good folks over at our new health care blog to get down into all the details. But the core premise of the policies the president is about to lay out is that Americans are over-insured when it comes to health insurance. Over-insured. Got too much insurance.

These aren't my words. These are the words used by the conservative policy-wonks who came up with the president's proposals. Just hop over to Google and start googling the phrase 'over insured' along with 'health' and 'conservative'. This what they think; and what the president thinks. It's why he's behind these ideas.

What a group of idiots. I'd dare say the ONLY group in this country that thinks they are overinsured are right-wing policy wonks. And that is simply because they are undead.


Atrios put this up already, but here is the link:

ABC News co-anchor Bob Woodruff and a cameraman were seriously injured Sunday in an attack and explosion while reporting from

The two journalists were traveling with U.S. and Iraqi troops near Taji, about 12 miles north of Baghdad, when an improvised explosive device went off, ABC News President David Westin said. Both were in serious condition and undergoing surgery at a U.S. military hospital in the area, the network said.

Though the White House doesn't want you to know it, American & Iraqi kids continue to die and be injured at an alarming rate. The latest American count is 2,242 dead, and an estimated 250,000 dead Iraqis.

What a disaster.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

The Chimp gets taken to the Woodshed

The NY Times Editorial puts the masthead of the Gray Lady up Bush's sphincter. Each and every flimsy argument put forward by the Bush Administration is taken down and exposed for the lie it is. Let's hope this opens the floodgates.

Sept. 11 could have been prevented. This is breathtakingly cynical. The nation's guardians did not miss the 9/11 plot because it takes a few hours to get a warrant to eavesdrop on phone calls and e-mail messages. They missed the plot because they were not looking...

Only bad guys are spied on.
Bush officials have said the surveillance is tightly focused only on contacts between people in this country and Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups. Vice President Dick Cheney claimed it saved thousands of lives by preventing attacks. But reporting in this paper has shown that the National Security Agency swept up vast quantities of e-mail messages and telephone calls and used computer searches to generate thousands of leads. F.B.I. officials said virtually all of these led to dead ends or to innocent Americans. The biggest fish the administration has claimed so far has been a crackpot who wanted to destroy the Brooklyn Bridge with a blowtorch — a case that F.B.I. officials said was not connected to the spying operation anyway.

The spying is legal. The secret program violates the law as currently written. It's that simple. In fact, FISA was enacted in 1978 to avoid just this sort of abuse.

Just trust us. Mr. Bush made himself the judge of the proper balance between national security and Americans' rights, between the law and presidential power. He wants Americans to accept, on faith, that he is doing it right. But even if the United States had a government based on the good character of elected officials rather than law, Mr. Bush would not have earned that kind of trust. The domestic spying program is part of a well-established pattern: when Mr. Bush doesn't like the rules, he just changes them, as he has done for the detention and treatment of prisoners and has threatened to do in other areas, like the confirmation of his judicial nominees. He has consistently shown a lack of regard for privacy, civil liberties and judicial due process in claiming his sweeping powers. The founders of our country created the system of checks and balances to avert just this sort of imperial arrogance.

The rules needed to be changed.
In 2002, a Republican senator — Mike DeWine of Ohio — introduced a bill that would have done just that, by lowering the standard for issuing a warrant from probable cause to "reasonable suspicion" for a "non-United States person." But the Justice Department opposed it...

War changes everything. Mr. Bush says Congress gave him the authority to do anything he wanted when it authorized the invasion of Afghanistan. There is simply nothing in the record to support this ridiculous argument.

Other presidents did it. Mr. Gonzales, who had the incredible bad taste to begin his defense of the spying operation by talking of those who plunged to their deaths from the flaming twin towers, claimed historic precedent for a president to authorize warrantless surveillance. He mentioned George Washington, Woodrow Wilson and Franklin D. Roosevelt. These precedents have no bearing on the current situation, and Mr. Gonzales's timeline conveniently ended with F.D.R., rather than including Richard Nixon, whose surveillance of antiwar groups and other political opponents inspired FISA in the first place....

That is a good chunk, but not all, of the editorial. Go read it!

It ends with a nice kicker and a demand that Congress for once have some guts:

The Senate Judiciary Committee is about to start hearings on the domestic spying. Congress has failed, tragically, on several occasions in the last five years to rein in Mr. Bush and restore the checks and balances that are the genius of American constitutional democracy. It is critical that it not betray the public once again on this score.

I'm not affiliated

In actual history Ataturk was originally affiliated with and then ultimately wasn't too keen on the group known as the Young Turks and ultimately replaced them.

In current non-history Attaturk likes the Young Turks, though he is in no way affiliated with them.

It's just a coincidence.

Nevertheless, go see them on their filibuster marathon -- send them your good thoughts and especially your tea.

But seriously...

If I may...

I know that I'm not in the big leagues of blogs, but I'm going to put up the fax numbers of various Senators in regard to the filibuster anyway. I'm not Atrios, Kos, Firedoglake or Gilliard, so needless to say there was no e-vite for Atta J. Turk to take part in a conference call. But we've got a couple thousand regular visitors and that's something. I suppose the majority of you have already seen these numbers as well on those blogs, but what the hell, if I cannot be repetitive and annoying frankly all I've got left is the snark. But I'm not always a snarking machine. I truly think this is important, its time to support those who filibuster, it's time to tell our Senators that they need a spine and that their base is agitated and demanding they act.

I won't get a lot of satisfaction out of I told you so, if it results in fewer Constitutional Rights than I had before; it will not make me happy if a President is made a King - even if they are a Democrat. We revolted against that kind of power, I'm not going to be of the generation that gave up the ghost, because the current occupant - a slack jawed idiot - manufactures the idea of perpetual war. And THAT is exactly what is being created. Call if you can, email if you can, go to their offices if you can, below are FAX numbers use them.

Hell, send them portions of this post if you want. Whatever, just do something if you can, even if it is to send one FAX to your Senator(s).

Tell 'em to fight.

AR: Lincoln(D) (202) 228-1371
AR: Pryor(D) (202) 228-0908
CA: Boxer(D) (202) 226-6701
CA: Feinstein(D) (202) 228-3954
CO: Salazar(D) (202) 228-5036
CT: Dodd(D) (202) 224-1083
CT: Lieberman(D) (202) 224-9750
DE: Biden(D) (202) 224-0139
DE: Carper(D) (202) 228-2190
FL: Nelson(D) (202) 228-2183
HI: Akaka(D) (202) 224-2126
HI: Inouye(D) (202) 224-6747
IA: Harkin(D) (202) 224-9369
IL: Durbin(D) (202) 228-0400
IL: Obama(D) (202) 228-4260
IN: Bayh(D) No FAX listed
LA: Landrieu(D) (202) 224-9735
MA: Kennedy(D) (202) 224-2417
MA: Kerry(D) (202) 224-8525
MD: Mikulski(D) (202) 224-8858
MD: Sarbanes(D) (202) 224-1651
MI: Levin(D) (202) 224-1388
MI: Stabenow(D) (202) 228-0325
MN: Dayton(D) (202) 228-2186
Local (612) 727-5223
MT: Baucus(D) (202) 224-0515
ND: Conrad(D) (202) 224-7776
ND: Dorgan(D) (202) 224-1193
NE: Nelson(D) (202) 228-0012
NJ: Corzine(D) (202) 228-2197
NJ: Lautenberg(D) (202) 224-9707
NM: Bingaman(D) (202) 224-2852
NV: Reid(D) (202) 224-7327
NY: Clinton(D) (202) 228-0282
NY: Schumer(D) (202) 228-3027
OR: Wyden(D) (202) 228-2717
RI: Reed(D) (202) 224-4680
SD: Johnson(D) (202) 228-0368
VT: Leahy(D) (202) 224-3595
VT: Jeffords(I) No FAX listed
WA: Cantwell(D) (202) 228-0514
WA: Murray(D) (202) 224-0238
WI: Feingold(D) (202) 224-2725
WI: Kohl(D) (202) 224-9787
WV: Rockefeller(D) (202) 224-7665
WV: Byrd(D) (202) 228-0002

And possible Republicans who are purportedly strongly pro-choice:

Lincoln Chafee Fax: (202) 228-2853 / (401) 453-5085
Susan Collins: Fax: (202) 224-2693 / (207) 990-4604
Olympia Snowe: Fax: (202) 224-1946 / (207) 874-7631
Ted Stevens: Fax: (202) 224-2354

Thanks to Daily Kos for the Fax Numbers.

Jane Hamsher even found a website to send free faxes.

Thanks to all of you who do something.


Atta J. Turk

My own review of Brokeback Mountain

Saw it this afternoon. Champollion is right, it's a downer.

But boy is it a well-made, well-crafted, emotionally reasonant film. It's been a great year for male leading roles and Heath Ledger is no different, he'll get an Oscar nomination easy, as will his co-star Jake I'm-too-lazy-to-look-up-his-name-in-hall. Ang Lee is such a gifted director, he can handle virtually every kind of film -- except comic book movies.

My resistance to seeing it was that my least favorite movie is the gratuitous violence movie. For example, you could not pay me to see "Hostel". But close behind it is the tragic-romance. As a single man, I truly feel I paid my debt to see such movies when I saw "Terms of Endearment" many years ago.

Nevertheless, a wonderful movie - but it is a downer.


(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)


It needs to be said more often, and to their credit Wampum has been shouting this for weeks now, but there is a massive amount of bigotry in the way in which the major media has been covering the Abramoff scandal.

No, not bigotry towards Democrats, though the shoddy reporting tying Democrats into the scandal is a result of it.

It is bigotry toward Native Americans. It is bad enough that Abramoff duped many of these tribes and then in private emails back and forth gloated about it in language that is virtually out of the 19th century "they're savages" handbook, but the media has treated the tribal donations as if they are per se sleazy.

In other words, all tribal money is tainted -- for no other reason than it comes from Native American tribes. It's not outright sleazy, but it sure is not buried too far under the message.

It would be nice if a major publication, say the Washington Post, perhaps the greatest major newspaper offender, or NBC News, easily the greatest broadcast offender paid some attention to an editorial like this:

We've read so many columns lately with the same anti-Indian message that it's almost as if somebody issued a set of talking points. The Jack Abramoff scandal isn't the product of sleazy lobbying or greedy congressmen or even a degenerating political system, goes the current line - it's the fault of all those tribal casinos.

Can't say we're surprised at this chorus. Even though the few tribes that did hire Abramoff have been treated by investigators as his victims, they make too juicy a target for a growing array of anti-Indian forces to pass up. Political posturing adds to the cacophony.

Republicans tarred by Abramoff's networking are looking for a way to drag in Democrats. They figure they can defuse the scandal, like such previous Washington disasters as the savings and loan debacle, by making it bipartisan. Their gimmick is to fudge the line between the crooked lobbyist and the legitimate interest that used his service and point to all the Democrats taking money ''from Abramoff's clients,'' meaning from the Indian tribes.

Yet the tell-tale signal of blaming the victims has not been broadly noticed as of yet. It would be nice if, in addition to saying "Not one Dime", Howard Dean also pointed out the obvious bigotry of the GOP's talking point -- something that will knock the lying bastards off their balance for a bit, and also having the extra weight of being true.

This is hardly the worst crime ever committed by our society against Native Americans, but it is sad that in 21st Century the canards of past centuries still bubble just below the surface with organizations that should know better.

And now for some lowbrow humor

My apologies to transgendered people everywhere - who do not deserve comparison to Ann Coulter.

What a bunch of fucknuts

Who's the genius who thought this strategy would work? It's a war crime. It also sounds like something that Bush & Cheney would dream up:

Documents Show Army Seized Wives as Tactic

The U.S. Army in Iraq has at least twice seized and jailed the wives of suspected insurgents in hopes of "leveraging" their husbands into surrender, U.S. military documents show...

I'm guessing it is many more than that. So how much of a relationship is there between the holding of Jill Carroll and the demand that women prisoners be released by her kidnappers and this policy?

Be More than Don Quixote

Go read Gilliard and follow along to try to stop Alito.

Oh, hell, I'll just steal what he wrote, go visit him anyway...

I believe we really can stop Alito by Monday at 4:30 p.m. - but here's what we must do.

1. Ignore the media whores. Karl Rove is feeding them lies as he always does, and they are swallowing those lies as they always do. The only media that matters is the media we are creating right here by calling each Senator and getting a YES or NO statement from them.

2. Wake up the sleeping bloggers. Where are the biggest blogs, including DailyKos.com, TalkingPointsMemo.com, CrooksandLiars.com, and AmericaBlog.com? (Complaining about how Democrats played last week won't cut it -we're in the Super Bowl and we can win this damn game if we get Democrats to play their best game on Monday - and hopefully the rest of this coming week.) Thanks to Agonist, BobGeiger, The Democratic Daily, DemocraticUnderground, Eschaton, Firedoglake, MakeThemAccountable, Mark Crispin Miller, PoliticalWire, Vichy Democrats and everyone else who's plugging this.

3. Keep calling the Senators who are undecided or opposed to a filibuster. You can call their DC office all weekend and leave polite but firm voicemails urging the Senators to support Kerry's filibuster. When offices open on Monday 9 a.m. ET, make another round of calls. Let's shut down the Capitol switchboard on Monday!


4. Call the DNC (202-863-8000) and the DSCC (202-224-2447) and tell them your 2006 contributions will depend on the success of the Alito filibuster. Tell them they need to get every Democratic Senator on board.

5. Call talk shows like Air America, C-SPAN, etc. and talk about what we're doing on this blog and how we're killing ourselves to stop Alito - and how we can win if everyone who cares about the future of our Democracy joins us.

6. Keep hope alive - because American Democracy is worth it!!!

The Best Crisis EVER!

Think the oil companies hope the Iran thing simmers down? If so, you are a fool:

Chevron Corp. reported the highest profits in its 126-year history Friday, prompting outrage and charges of gouging that are likely to echo through next week as other oil giants report their earnings.

Higher oil prices coupled with increased production from its acquisition of Unocal fueled Chevron's fourth-quarter results and propelled it to its second straight record-setting year.

The San Ramon-based oil giant reported a net income of $4.14 billion in the last three months of 2005 and a profit of $14.1 billion for the year. The total likely would have been higher had the company not reported an estimated $1.4 billion in damage from the Gulf Coast hurricanes.

"They're having a very good year, and that money is coming out of your pocket,'' said AAA of Northern California spokesman Sean Comey.

In 2004, Chevron reported a net income of $13.3 billion, a record at the time. The two-year total of $27.4 billion makes this the most profitable period in the firm's history.

And here come the other industry giants rolling out just as the Chimperor Disgustus sets off to lie about the economy and international affairs again.

Friday, January 27, 2006

The Literary Value of Ass-Fucking

I cannot say that I don't take some form of satisfaction in this, maybe that's mean, but I don't care:

Maybe it's called Dog Days for a reason? Slow, lethargic, etc. Our cousin over at Galleycat has discovered from Bookscan that Wonkette Ana Marie Cox's debut novel isn't exactly flying off the shelves--especially if one considers all of the earned media she got from two reviews in the New York Times, a full page in People, etc.

Galleycat Ron: "So far, with numbers rounded up and all that, Cox has sold a grand total of 3,800 copies of Dog Days and the momentum already seems to be dissipating; last week saw a 37.5% drop in sales from the week before (1,000 down from 1,600). Furthermore, the book's audience is quite narrowly focused, as over a third of Cox's total sales come from New York and D.C."

The American Enterprise Institute noted the other day that Dog Days on Amazon.com was doing only slightly better than Quantitative Chemical Analysis, Sixth Edition. That was then. Now that 2002 textbook is doing a full thousand places better than the D.C. chick lit novel. Today Cox's a few spots behind "Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Designs for Generalized Causal Inference."

I'm sure, if and when I finally get my book together, it will sell a fraction of 3,800. However, it will not have the publicity of Dog Days behind it to say the least - it will sell poorly because, well, it simply sucks (marketing has always been my strongpoint). There are many writers on the internet of a higher quality than the well-financed publicity hound that is Ana Marie Cox. Look on the blogroll to the right and you'll find them. The only bad thing is that I hope publishers are not scared off buying books by bloggers. The fact is, it's pretty obvious, people didn't read Wonkette because she was a gifted writer, they read it because it was a two paragraph frivolity.


For the lying sacks of shit that NBC News has become go read Josh Marshall. Here's a part:

New study by non-partisan research firm says no dice to claims Jack Abramoff was steering tribal money to Dems like he was to Republicans. In fact, the study suggests opposite.

The analysis shows:

in total, the donations of Abramoff’s tribal clients to Democrats dropped by nine percent after they hired him, while their donations to Republicans more than doubled, increasing by 135 percent after they signed him up;

five out of seven of Abramoff’s tribal clients vastly favored Republican candidates over Democratic ones;

four of the seven began giving substantially more to Republicans than Democrats after he took them on;

Abramoff’s clients gave well over twice as much to Republicans than Democrats, while tribes not affiliated with Abramoff gave well over twice as much to Democrats than the GOP -- exactly the reverse pattern.

I repeat the title!

America's Sweetheart (if they're allowed to be packing)

It's been a quiet couple of months in crazytown, but Ann Coulter is back and she's more fucked up than ever:

"We need somebody to put rat poisoning in Justice Stevens' creme brulee," Coulter said. "That's just a joke, for you in the media."

At a minimum that sentence was a crime against nature.

But they're not done scrubbing yet

They better get moving faster.

A strong bipartisan majority of the public believes President Bush should release records of meetings between disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff and White House staffers despite administration claims that media requests for details about those contacts amount to a "fishing expedition," according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

The survey found that three in four--76 percent--of all Americans said Bush should disclose contacts between aides and Abramoff while 18 percent disagreed. Two in three Republicans joined with eight in 10 Democrats and political independents in favoring disclosure, according to the poll.

Of particular note are the meetings between Rove & Abramoff. Perhaps Susan Ralston could tell us?

Of course, it's Friday, so maybe we'll find ourselves with a big ol' dump today.

Bacon & Gravy

The Washington Post does a fine job illustrating the growth of Pork Spending under the GOP, but I felt their graphic was missing something to illustrate the problem more clearly. I hope this helps.

Media Ethics

Well as you have no doubt found out by the time you visit this blog, Tim Russert is -- no shit -- giving a speech on Media Ethics (and not lack thereof) at the Ripon College's Ethical Leadership Program.

I sure hope some students at that college take the time to read their student newspaper.

Or maybe they can read this.

Or, perhaps he can talk about big footing his son into a job with Carville and promoting it on his show -- the kind of nepotism apparently permissible in the age of the Bush Dynasty.

Jane at Firedoglake has more on Russert trying to sic NBC flacks at Arianna Huffington over the matter.

As far as I know nobody at NBC gives a shit about Atta J. Turk, which is too bad considering that David Sarnoff is my real father!*

*May or may not be accurate.

I don't know about you...

But I'm hoping to book passage on the Colbert Cruise.

Winston Smith

I sense the hand of O'Brien in all of this:

over the last hour or more whole sections of the company's archives have been pulled down off the web. Sure enough, when we checked, big chunks of the site had already bit the dust. The Ralph Reed party we mentioned earlier still seems to be holding on. But the folks at Reflections already seem to have pulled a whole event from which one of Bush/Abramoff photographs had earlier been erased.

Bush Cronies off to get rich by screwing the poor of New Orleans

Bush is rebuilding New Orleans on the cheap, not that his buddies won't get rich by doing so.

The poor, scratch that, the non-wealthy, will get shit.

Scout Prime has the story -- your major media? Jackshit. But then why would wealthy media folks have any sympathy with the poor and dispossessed?

What NSA really does all day

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Thursday, January 26, 2006

You know my dog shows you it's thinking the same way...

Only I'm pretty sure my dog is actually thinking at the time.


So I was over at Wolcott and noticed that he stated that Wonkette had been removed from his blogroll and Counterpunch put up in its place.

First I thought, "oh well, another day of Atta J. Turk not being blogrolled". But then I wondered whether Wolcott just got tired of ass-fucking jokes? Even though Wonkette had been on my blogroll for some time, I hadn't gone there in a long time so I looked it over.

I noticed that yesterday some of the links bore this signature:


Well now I know, I can't have anything linking to Ernest T. Bass, that's simply being the catcher of an intellectual ass-fucking.

Henceforth, Wonkette is off the blogroll. That should knock her down about a hit a week, but it's a start.

Atta J. Turk's Simplified (but not too simplified) FOXNEWS Osama Talking Point Co-Dependency Chart

Refer to here for a more complicated description:


Osama & Al Qaeda are marginalized thanks to Republican George Bush.


Osama is a danger & he's spouting Democratic Talking Points

Wow, I used to love him on Ed Sullivan

Reporter: "Hey, there was a report yesterday saying the army is broken. Is the army alright?"

"Zis alright"

Senor Dumbass everybody!

Thanks to Nim.

Oh jiminy jiminy fuck THIS is rich

A few days ago I linked to Arianna Huffington's post about Li'l Russ fellating James Carville about his co-hosting a sports talk show on XM with the Li'lest Russ of them all.

It took a few days for Mickey Kausterfuck to pick up on it, but he did, with this little nugget:

One angle Arianna misses is the bad parenting angle. It's one thing if a big star uses his connections to get a job for his unemployed son. Connections help. Stars' sons are often talented! But a sophomore in college? Isn't that rushing the connections thing a bit? Does Tim Russert think he's actually doing his son a favor? Does Luke Russert have no spark of honest Oedipal anger?






Who should link to Kaus today, but the Doughy Pantload:

It's more incestuous than you thought. Mickey Kaus has the 411.
Posted at 07:59 AM

Jonah "My mummy and me are a team" Goldberg, applies the beat down about nepotism?!!!

Please, I noticed that some of you did not spew your coffee upon the monitor in a synchronized manner. Please correct this deficiency in the near future. We must work together people.

The World of Bush -- Freeance smell it, SMELL IT!

In furtherance of the idea below, here is an example of how "less freedom" is being implemented as a strategy by the Bush regime:

Let’s make sure we get this story right. You take the captured, uniformed general of an enemy army — and in blatant violation of all notions of human decency and of the Geneva Conventions — you beat him with rubber hoses, pour water down his nose, then stuff him into a sleeping bag, tie him with electrical cord, and then sit your ass down on his chest until he suffocates and you are convicted of what? “Negligent homicide?”

....Remember that the victim in this case, Iraqi General Abed Hamel Mowhoush was a top, uniformed officer of a recognized state-sponsored enemy army and not some “illegal combatant.” Worse, when Mowhoush was suffocated in November 2003, it was after he had voluntarily turned himself in to U.S. military authorities. At least, sort of voluntarily. Fact is, the General surrendered to American troops because they were holding his sons hostage — yet another stark violation of international law.

And I'm betting that the individual who committed the murder, I mean "Negligent Homicide" voted Republican because...

The day after the general’s death, prosecutors said, Welshofer asked for another sleeping bag so he could continue using the technique on others.


I weep for my country.

Pretty much lifted entirely from Kevin Drum.

By Jove I think I got it!

There I was listening to Andrea Mitchell on IMUS, fresh off a night of fruitless attempts to do more than dry hump her fossil (really the lack of broken hips in that entangling is a testament to modern vitamin supplements). Mitchell was proclaiming the polls showing Americans sympathetic to Bush giving us all less freedom (though they don't say that), when it dawned on me.

Since they hate us for our freedom, Bush making sure that we don't have as much freedom, means that they won't hate us as much.

It's really quite brilliant, in a cowardly and stupid way.

She's been going in and out of style

Laura dear, the Sergeant Pepper cover came out nearly 40 years ago.

(REUTERS/Mannie Garcia)


"Andrea, the purple pill has kicked in again. Bring me the football and wheel me out to the tire swing."

(Toby Melville/Reuters)

Wherever Alito goes...

...he looks like the mortician trying to sell you the oak instead of the less expensive pine casket and the more expensive vault sealant.

(Larry Downing/Reuters)

The Purple Finger of Fate

Karma is such a beeyatch!

RAMALLAH, West Bank (AFP) - Palestinian prime minister Ahmed Qorei announced his resignation and said the radical Islamist group Hamas must form the next government after the general election.

The announcement came as Hamas looked set for a stunning victory over Fatah in the Palestinian election, plunging the stalled Middle East peace process into further turmoil.

Senior officials from Fatah, the movement which has dominated Palestinian politics for years, privately acknowledged that they had been beaten into second place by Hamas which was contesting its first parliamentary election.

The central elections commision said the official result would not be announced until 7 pm (1700 GMT), but Hamas was confident that it would now have an absolute majority in the 132-seat parliament.

Well, I guess its time for the folks at AIPAC to favor bombing the fuck all out of Gaza in retribution for this outrageous outbreak of democracy or something.

Oh well, at least the right-wing can crow about (or aboot) Canada for few months until that government falls.

Those damn liberal bloggers

I sure hope that "Charcoal" Jim Brady and Lovey Howell have noticed that those uncivilized progressive bloggers are doing actual journalism while they pontificate about whatever the fuck it is that they are doing. I sure hope that doesn't qualify as "hate speech" under Mr. Brady's fragile constitution - I'd hate to have to remove it from my blog.

Glenn Greenwald deserves credit for this story which has now made it into major newspapers, and who knows may make it everywhere but FoxNews. Good for the Post (and Knight-Ridder and the L.A. Times too) for crediting Greenwald. I sure hope that Mr. Greenwald is actually getting some of that Soros money that I, and others, are allegedly getting according to Bill O'Reilly.

The Bush administration rejected a 2002 Senate proposal that would have made it easier for FBI agents to obtain surveillance warrants in terrorism cases, concluding that the system was working well and that it would likely be unconstitutional to lower the legal standard.

The proposed legislation by Sen. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) would have allowed the FBI to obtain surveillance warrants for non-U.S. citizens if they had a "reasonable suspicion" they were connected to terrorism -- a lower standard than the "probable cause" requirement in the statute that governs the warrants.

That's quite a crimp in the old argument isn't it. They better whip out the Clenis to really blame for all this shit.

By the way, I went into Best Buy the other day to buy myself a bunch of electronic stuff (I needed that 61" Plasma for research) and told them to put it on Mr. Soros's tab. It turns out that Mr. Soros not only doesn't have a tab for progressive bloggers, but wouldn't even pay my bail money later that evening. It probably didn't help that Atta J. Turk doesn't have a social security number. Damned pseudonyms.


A Quarter-Million Souls freed from the ruthless dictatorship of breathing

The much discussed (but not discussed enough) Lancet study of two years ago has been expanded further. The new estimated death count in Iraq attributable to the actions of the Bush Regime, 250,000 having gone through their "final throes" and been liberated of life.

Not that we dare talk about them in this nation, the very destruction of the people we are allegedly saving. That's impolite. Why it's even impolitic apparently to talk about the injuries, let alone deaths of our own people in this nation, let alone those people that to some, God apparently doesn't give a shit about because of their location by birth.

To discuss the futility of a badly planned and implemented war is treasonous you know. We must keep fighting it badly, and kill more, or else something nebulously awful will happen.

Anything to help out in the war...well except actually fight in it you know

I've seen some take downs, I've taken part in some take downs (I prefer to do the piling on myself, I'm good at the piling on) so I know it when I see it.

TBogg truly takes down Evonne Goolagong, I mean Michelle Maglalangadingdong.

The Internets

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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

A President's Optimism

Tonight on the Newshour a segment worth seeing: Chile's new President Michelle Bachelet. What a striking contrast between Bachelet and Bush.

JIM LEHRER: Finally tonight, the newly-elected president of Chile, Michelle Bachelet. She is a pediatrician, a socialist and a former minister of health and defense.
Her father, an air force general, was tortured and died in prison. He had been in the government of Salvador Allende, which was overthrown in a 1973 coup led by Augusto Pinochet. Michelle Bachelet and her mother were also imprisoned and tortured.

ELIZABETH FARNSWORTH: I was really interested that night in the celebration many people said to me -- even people who suffered a lot under the dictatorship -- "We really appreciate the fact that Dr. Bachelet is willing to forgive".

You suffered a lot. You don't like to talk about it. Your mother was six days in a cage the size of like a square. Your father died because of the tortures -- he wrote letters you've read I'm sure that are the saddest letters one could imagine, about what happened to him.


ELIZABETH FARNSWORTH: How do you come to this position of being so positive about the possibility for reencuentro - the coming together of the nation?

MICHELLE BACHELET: I wouldn't be honest if I told you that in some moment of my life I had a lot of rage --- probably hate -- I'm not sure of hate, but rage.

But you know what happens is that then you realize you cannot do to others what you think nobody has to do to anybody. Life is important for me and not any kind of life, quality too of life.

So probably it's strange or its difficult to understand, but everything that happened to me made me not only rationally but emotionally get to a deep conviction.

Bush's optimism, born of privilege, proved to him every time he needed something it fell into his lap. On a silver platter. His optimism is of the silk stocking variety, blue-blood to the core.

Bachelet's optimism is entirely different, born of suffering, of a life that may have allowed some advantage, but one that saw true horror. And survived.

That is an optimism I can relate to.

Trust Us

It is mostly white men that work here! And the women, we treat our secretaries well!

"Brownie, you're a heckuva douchebag"

Michael Brown was paid his full salary after his resignation with the purpose supposedly being he would cooperate in the investigation of what fuck ups occurred. Now, of course, we are starting to learn how monumental they were, even worse than we thought possible at the time (and we thought they were possible of a LOT).

From ThinkProgress:

For nearly 2 months after Mike Brown was forced to resign from FEMA for his incompetent response to Hurricane Katrina, he continued to collect his full $148,000 salary as a “consultant.” Why was Brown retained? According to a FEMA spokeswoman, it was so he could fully cooperate with the investigations into what went wrong:

FEMA spokeswoman Nicol Andrews confirmed that Brown is still on FEMA’s payroll as a consultant. She said he works from home, where he is “pulling all the documentation together” to aid in the investigations into the government’s response to Katrina.

Now that Brown has cashed his checks, he is refusing to cooperate with the Senate investigation:

While FEMA has been helpful, Mike Brown — the former FEMA director who resigned amid intense criticism of his agency’s response — has refused to answer even the simplest questions, [Sen. Joe] Lieberman added.

Brown continues to talk about the issue, but only for a fee. He recently keynoted a storm response conference and provided “insight and perspective on Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.” Senators investigating the issue could have attended for the low price of $375.

About sums it up

Harold Myerson in the WaPo today:

Incompetence is not one of the seven deadly sins, and it's hardly the worst attribute that can be ascribed to George W. Bush. But it is this president's defining attribute. Historians, looking back at the hash that his administration has made of his war in Iraq, his response to Hurricane Katrina and his Medicare drug plan, will have to grapple with how one president could so cosmically botch so many big things -- particularly when most of them were the president's own initiatives.

Go read the rest...

Bush gave Free Money to FORD to create jobs...you know how that went

Max Plank in Atrios comments pointed me to this. In the wake of Ford cutting up to 30,000 jobs over the next few years, this is particularly outrageous:

It's almost enough to make you laugh—bitterly, of course. Here was Ford Motor Co. announcing yesterday that it had cut 10,000 jobs last year and that it will cut up to 30,000 more. But shedding jobs at muscle-car acceleration rates didn't stop Ford from pocketing hundreds of millions of dollars courtesy of the American Jobs Creation Act.

No, I'm not making this up. Right there, on page 2 of one of its news releases yesterday, Ford said that "repatriation of foreign earnings pursuant to the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004 resulted in a permanent tax savings of about $250 million."

Hello? How can you simultaneously cut jobs and benefit from the American Jobs Creation Act? Welcome to the wonderful world of Washington nomenclature.

Two-hundred and fifty million would pay for a lot of job retraining.

Meanwhile, Matt Millen still has a job.

"Hmmmm, I'm in favor of their clean government policy, but against their blow up the Jews policy"

Voting for the Palestinian populace, about as bad as...

Voting Republican
("Jews, well I guess not, Planned Parenthood? hell I'll make your bomb belt for you.")

Republican Light
(Hold the Jews, bring on the Iraqis.")

Or for that matter, many Democrats.
("I'm generally opposed to bombing anyone for no real reason and someday I'll take a stand against it. But now is not the time to take that stand. But some day, maybe.")